by Cari Nierenberg
Many Americans find figuring out their taxes less difficult than figuring out how to eat a healthy diet, according to a recent survey. More than 1,000 men and women between the ages of 18 and 80 recently completed an online survey on diet, health, and food conducted by the International Food Information Council Foundation. More than half of the respondents said that understanding their taxes is less difficult than understanding how to eat healthfully and are confused by frequent changes in nutritional advice. Although nine out of 10 respondents said they are in good or excellent health, only one in four describe their diet as extremely or very healthful, and one in five rate their diets as not healthful. Of the men in the survey, 60 percent have difficulty eating a healthy diet and 40 percent have difficulty getting regular exercise, while fewer women (44 percent) report not eating well though more women (56 percent) report difficulty exercising regularly. Although fully 90 percent report considering the ingredients in the food and drinks they consume, most still make food choices based first on taste, then on price, healthfulness, and convenience. More than half of the respondents are currently trying to lose weight, and only one in seven people are able to correctly estimate how many calories they need to consume each day to maintain their current weight.